I was wandering around Barnes & Noble today when I came upon a book called Skinny Bitch in the Kitch, and I became curious about it. Despite its chick-lit-esque cover and title, this is pretty much a vegan/raw foods cookbook. It's apparently the sequel to a book called Skinny Bitch. This is where things get complicated in my mind.
Did the authors of this book intend to at least make the habits of the typically American obsessed dieter more healthy? Or are they saying a veggie lifestyle is the only diet that will really make you thinner and healthier? The book description of Skinny Bitch on Amazon.com tells us this is a book that "encourages women to get excited about feeling 'clean, pure and energized'". I'm not sure about you, but I typically feel "clean, pure and energized" after a shower, not necessarily always after a meal, no matter how healthy.
One of the authors of this book has a Master's Degree in Holistic Nutrition, and that title alone, I think, should cause many diabetics to bristle. How many websites are there devoted to "Noni Juice Cures" or what have you?
I'm concerned that this book exists in such a mainstream way. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with healthy eating, and I'm definitely not saying we should just eat whatever overprocessed junk we feel like every single day. I just think that being a vegetarian/vegan/raw food kind of person is not the best choice for everyone out there.
I would be a very unhappy camper to be without cheese, yogurt, chicken, steak, even burgers. And I would be even more unhappy if I couldn't eat anything cooked.
I have a friend who is into constantly modifying her diet, but it hasn't helped her feel less stressed, and it hasn't solved her thyroid issues. It gives her a feeling of control over something, and also, she generally thinks meat is disgusting as a matter of taste. But I just want to yell at her sometimes. She does those juice fasts and colon cleanses once in a while, and I just don't think there's anything healthy about that at all. But she hears they're "Soooo good for you."
Studies have shown that a vegan diet can be helpful for some Type 2's, but you know they had to be carefully monitored and unfamiliar with the vegan lifestyle. If a doctor said that vegans always eat healthy, they probably tried to eat as healthy as possible. But you could eat nothing but potato chips fried in sunflower oil. You could still have a regular Coke (assuming that has no animal products in it). I'm sure vegan-friendly baked goods aren't exactly devoid of calories and fat either. I think you see what I'm trying to say here.
Now, somehow I discover that a documentary is set to release next year, called Raw for 30 Days. "Can a diabetic thrive without insulin and other drugs?" asks the website. "Can diabetes be reversed or cured with a diet?" Type 1s and LADAs, let's stand up and yell it, all together now:
Well, not for us anyway. Dead islet cells are dead islet cells. I hope if this documentary gets big that someone involved with its production has the cojones to tell us that. By reading the synopsis of the movie, I'm sure all the participants improve by the end of the film. It's unclear what type they have, but giving up the comforts of home and the stress of family for 30 days gives you a LOT of time to focus on yourself and your diabetes. I'm sure there is time allotted for everyone to exercise and all their food is healthy food. I'll bet everyone's A1C's are better by the end of the month. If I had that kind of time with no unexpected crisis or diversion, I'm sure I'd be pretty damn healthy too.
I feel like I've made some kind of very roundabout point here. I guess my main point is that I'm a little afraid of those who are so militant about dietary extremes curing disease or obesity.
Trust me, I've seen some unhealthy looking vegans in the past few years. Explain to me how a 22-year-old vegan who doesn't drink and is fairly bony-looking can have a potbelly. Really.
But mostly, I'm afraid of the wide release of a documentary that could be misleading to many people out there with diabetes--people who think a change in their diet will be the only thing they ever need to get back to normal.
Face it, D-Friends, sometimes we're just going to need that medication. And always, some of us are going to need that insulin...until they find a real, medical cure.